Your Graces, My Lord bishops, Rev. Fathers, Religious men and Women, family members, our Lay Faithful and all invited guests. Good Evening.
As you may be aware we have an office to spearhead the process of beatification of Servant of God Maurice Michael Cardinal Otunga situated at Cardinal Otunga Plaza 8th floor. The Office was established in 2009 and is coordinated by a vice postulator and a religious sister. In addition, for the process to get necessary resources needed for smooth running, we have a central committee for mobilisation of resources.
Beatification is a process through which the church declares one a saint due to exemplary living of faith (life of heroic virtues) or through martyrdom following confession of faith. We thank God that slowly Kenya is becoming a “land of saints”.
In 2015 we celebrated the beatification of Blessed Irene Stefani “ Nyatha” a Consolata Missionary Sister who lived, worked and died in Nyeri. This was an example of a life of heroic virtues. She contracted prague while serving sick people in Gikondi Parish in the Archdiocese of Nyeri. Her compassionate heart invites us all to be hospitable, kind and Generous. All for Jesus nothing for me. While on 26th May 2018, we celebrated the beatification of Blessed Leonella Sgobarti, a Consolata Missionary Sister who worked in Kenya and was murdered in Somalia for hatred of Faith in Piacenza. Torino, Italy. This is an example of martyrdom. Life given out, blood poured out for confession of Faith. Despite pain of the bullet, She died saying I forgive, I forgive, I forgive. Called to forgive, love and transform lives of others.
Friends, we thank you for supporting the process of beatification and canonisation of the Servant of God Maurice Michael Cardinal Otunga in Kenya which is our first Kenyan Cause for our teacher and shepherd. This calls for great creation of awareness among our people through education and involvement. Servant of God, Maurice Michael Cardinal Otunga was a simple, generous, compassionate and prayerful man.
He loved justice, condemned evil, protected life, believ.
ed in the dignity of the person and had special love for the needy, poor and less fortunate. He lived the Gospel to the full … I was hungry you gave me food, thirsty you gave me water and naked you clothed me…. MT: 25: 31 -46
The process is engaging and requires financial resources to facilitate the Roman phase’s expenses (allowances, data analysis, and preparation of biography) and Archdiocesan Postulation Office expenses like creation of publicity through mass media and day to day running of the beatification office.
The Servant of God Maurice Michael Cardinal Otunga was born in western Kenya Bungoma diocese among the ABukusu tribe. He became a catholic Christian, a priest, a bishop and a cardinal. He worked in Kisumu as Auxiliary bishop, Kisii as local Ordinary and Nairobi as Local Ordinary. By his simplicity in life style he touched the lives of many people and his reputation spread wide.
We are here to celebrate his human qualities and Christian virtues which have made him a hero of Faith. He was a committed shepherd as he celebrated the sacraments, preached the Word of God and guided tenderly the flock entrusted to his care by the Church. Our gathering together here today is a sure sign of our commitment to see this process fruitfully concluded and the Servant of God declared a saint, he is a role model of faith for us and the entire the universal Catholic Church.
On this fund raising dinner occasion, on behalf of myself and all Christians of the Archdiocese of Nairobi as their Shepherd, I wish to register our deep gratitude and appreciation for your personal presence, spiritual as well as financial support. I thank you for honouring me in such a great number as we share this meal, reflect on the values of the Servant of God and joyfully participate in his cause of beatification. To you all may God who is never out done in generosity bless you, your families and the work of your hands abundantly.
Inspired by the life and example of Servant of God, let us become good stewards of available resources, avoid corruption, negative ethnicity and strive to make Kenya a home for all irrespective of one’s race, tribe, or status.
I entrust you all to the maternal protection and intercession of Blessed Virgin Mary our Mother and Queen of Peace.
H.E. JOHN CARDINAL NJUE
ARCHBISHOP OF NAIROBI